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Elvis Presley's Biography

Elvis Aron Presley, nicknamed 'The King' was born on January 8, 1935 in Tupelo, Mississippi. Elvis was one of twin boys, but his brother Jesse Garon was stillborn.

School reports show Elvis had an IQ of 70.

Elvis Presley began singing in the local church choir. In 1953 he was discovered by 31 year-old, Sam Philips of Sun Records. Elvis made five records for the Sun label, the last of which, I Forgot to Remember to Forget made number 1 in the country charts.

In 1955 Presley's new manager, Colonel Tom Parker, a controversial character with a head for commerce, arranged a deal with Philips and signed Elvis to RCA for the largest advance known at the time.

By this time Elvis Presley was the most popular American performer. Many people claim that the release of Heartbreak Hotel (1956) is as good a point as any to call the start of 'rock'.

Elvis had many great hits in the late fifties, including Blue Suede Shoes (1956), Hound Dog (1956), Love Me Tender (1956), All Shook Up (1957), and Jailhouse Rock (1958).

In 1958 Elvis was drafted into the US army in West Germany for two years, where he met his future wife, Priscilla. In 1960 Elvis Presley became a black belt in karate.

In the sixties, his music had lost some of its raw energy, but, of course, the mass appeal remained with songs like Return to Sender (1962), In the Ghetto (1969), and Suspicious Minds (1969).

In December 1970, Elvis Presley wrote to President Nixon:

"I wish not to be given a title or an appointed position. I can and will do more good if I were made a Federal Agent at Large, and I will help best by doing it my way through my communications with people of all ages. First of all I am an entertainer but all I need is the Federal credentials."

As a result, Elvis Presley was made an Agent of the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs by Nixon and received an enamel shield which became one of his most prized possessions.

According to an FBI report, Elvis Presley believed The Beatles had led young people astray 'by their filthy unkempt appearances and suggestive music.'

In the seventies, Elvis re-emerged as a night club performer in Las Vegas, but his last years, particularly after the departure of his wife Priscilla in 1973, were dogged by obesity and an addiction to narcotics.

For two years Elvis ate only meatloaf, mashed potatoes and tomatoes.

Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977. He wore a cross, a Star of David and the Hebrew letter Chai because, he said, "I don't want to miss out on heaven due to a technicality".

According to the Guinness World Records in 2005 Elvis Presley was the most successful musical artist ever.

Elvis had 18 of his singles re-released in 2005 to mark the 70th anniversary of his birth, including three UK number ones - Jailhouse Rock, One Night and It's Now or Never.

In 2007, Elvis Presley came second in Channel 4's 100 Greatest Sex Symbols.

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